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What About Women Pastors?, pt 2

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What does the Bible say about women pastors?


Steve Answers:

NOTHING SPECIFIC.

Last week we identified what a hot-button issue this is, especially if you’re a female who’s considering whether or not God’s calling you to be a pastor. But it’s not only a hot-button issue for females. If you’re a male, you may fear what might happen if females enter your sacred domain.

Last week I pointed out one text from the Bible that people on both sides of the issue usually claim.

A favorite text for people who think women shouldn’t be pastors is 1 Timothy 2:12, which says, "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent."

Their theme is that in the Bible God chose males to be spiritual leaders. So why would God make a change now? And would God make such a change without letting us know?

A favorite text for people who think women should be pastors is Galatians 3:27, 28, which says, "For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus."

The common theme used to support this position deals with spiritual gifts. So if God’s given a female the gift of "pastoring," being female doesn’t disqualify you.

WHAT AM I TO DO?

At this point you may be wondering, When the Bible isn’t clear about a topic, or when it seems to present support for opposite sides, what should a person do?

Here’s what the early Adventists did. They got together and studied the Bible and prayed. Even though a female prophet was part of their group, she didn’t give them the simple answer, because God hadn’t given it to her.

After the group hammered out a belief, the prophet would receive a vision that confirmed their conclusion. This gave them courage to continue in their newfound understanding.

I suggest that you do the same thing. Get together with some people to study the Bible as a group. It might take several sessions. Pray. Look for confirmation from God. Use this article as a starting point, but there’s much more to discover and discuss.

In my parents’ generation, people weren’t even expecting females to receive the gift of pastoring. In my generation we believe it is possible. And it seems to me that the current generation of young people expects God to give the gift to both males and females.

Because there seems to be some confusion about this question from the Bible, I’ve studied the topic by myself and with groups of people. And I’ve seen an increasing number of females who have been given the gift of pastoring.

As a Seventh-day Adventist Church we’ve voted that women cannot be ordained as pastors, but they can be hired as pastors. I think God has been giving the gift of pastoring to both females and males, but we’re just starting to catch on to that reality.



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